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Topic: In 2009 I *will* start reading Faulkner

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Subject: In 2009 I *will* start reading Faulkner
Date Posted: 12/31/2008 5:50 PM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
Posts: 5,931
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I've never read anything by Faulkner, except for a "Rose for Emily" in high school which I really enjoyed.  I got a boxed set of his books at the library booksale, including A Light in August, As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury.  I was thinking I'd start with Sound & the Fury, but what does everyone think?  What's the best one to start with?  It doesn't have to be one of these three, just the one you liked best.

Date Posted: 1/1/2009 1:02 PM ET
Member Since: 12/6/2008
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I have only read The Sound and The Fury and that was for a college English class. The story is quite compelling, but when I started reading the book I had no idea of the writing style. Each of the sections is written in a different voice, from a different characters' perspectives. The first section is written in stream of consciousness, which I had never encountered before, and to add to that the character is mentally challenged. I was so frustrated trying to read it that I finally went online and found a breakdown of that section detailing where the thought and time changes occurred! I marked them with a pencil and then read the chapter!! That kept me from throwing the book out the window and quitting the class. It also helped me enjoy the book. The other sections were no problem. And as I mentioned, the story itself is actually quite compelling. However, I haven't quite mustered up the courage to try another Faulkner and it has been a year and a half!!! Good luck

Last Edited on: 1/1/09 1:03 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/1/2009 8:34 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2006
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Last Edited on: 3/8/14 10:48 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/1/2009 10:13 PM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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Mind if I join you Vanessa :-)

I tried reading Light in August as a teen and just couldn't get into it. However, I picked up Absalom Absalom at a library book sale in March and still haven't tried it yet. I look forward to seeing what you think of his books.

Subject: Faulkner as a literary "duty"
Date Posted: 1/7/2009 8:02 PM ET
Member Since: 10/17/2006
Posts: 1,427
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Vanessa:  I felt that if I wanted to consider myself a literate American, I had to read something of Faulkner's.  Well, the novel that came to hand was Sanctuary.   I'm a mature adult woman but . . . .as I read it, I felt much the same  way Barbara explained in her post, above.   It dismays me to think that high schoolers in the USA are subjected to novels about such sordid characters.  The idea of reading Faulkner novels one after the other is . . . . .UGH . . . I think I'd wind up taking "uppers" if I could get my hands on some!

Subject: Doing my Duty this year too
Date Posted: 4/5/2009 6:45 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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Funny, I've only read and loved Faulkner's "A Rose for Emily."  I always felt sad that I didn't join in when Oprah chose Faulkner's three books for her book club.

As I Lay Dying is on it's way and I am scared I won't  understand it. Oh well, here's hoping for a good read.

Date Posted: 4/5/2009 10:00 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2007
Posts: 3,237
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Don't forget we're reading The Sound and the Fury for April's book-of-the-month! It's not a long book--a good way to jump into Faulkner!

Subject: Count me in!
Date Posted: 4/7/2009 8:47 PM ET
Member Since: 3/28/2009
Posts: 2
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Just getting into Sartoris, my first. I've just reached the point where I no longer want to rip my hair out.  Yesterday I figured out which characters are which. Two Johns and two Bayards is realistic but exceedingly frustrating for a first-timer.  I'm enjoying it now and unless another John or Bayard comes along, I'll finish this one and reach for the next. How are you getting on with your first Falkner, Vanessa? I'm looking forward to hearing your take.